Monday, November 12, 2007
Do you ever have those days where you secretly hope more bad shit happens to you so you can keep feeling sorry for yourself? Where you feel like you’ve put up with so much shit, why not just pour it on? And you can’t tell anybody the specifics because, to them, it won’t mean a fucking thing. They’ll just nod their heads and feign sympathy and say things like “That sucks” or “I understand”, all the while thinking you’re a diva or drama queen or crybaby or all three and that you need to get a fucking grip and stop being so sensitive. Telling someone about your bad day is like showing a stranger a picture of your baby. He doesn’t give a fuck, but he’ll pretend to.
No one can fully appreciate and comprehend the fucked-uppedness of your bad day but you. That’s because bad days are usually comprised of a series of small, shitty, inconsequential events that pile up and up and up. When you try to describe a bad day, things come across as mundane and disjointed – which is what bad days typically are. You can’t make a person feel your pain when you’re boring them with “and then’s”. Us bad-day-havers know this, yet we continue to dictate.
On a bad day, every “what’s up” and “how are you?” is an opportunity for sympathy. Sympathy, no matter how fake and phoned-in, is good because it’s like saying, “Life sucks. I’m on your side.” It’s your tenth-grade friend telling you he has your back, even though he’ll inevitably end up watching you get your ass kicked from the sidelines. But fuck it. Oftentimes the right words are enough to placate.
Until somebody doesn’t ask what happened:
“Hi, how are you today?”
“Oh… paper or plastic?”
Don’t tell me you don’t feel disappointed when somebody doesn’t invite you to elaborate on your pity-party. It sucks when they don’t ask you what happened, doesn’t it? It adds to your bad day. That’s because you’re the center of the universe and, therefore, everyone must give a fuck about you.
“You don’t want to know what happened? Fuck you. I hate you. Double those coupons.”
If you’re the person who doesn’t give a fuck, you should always ask what happened. It’s good etiquette – akin to waiting for everyone’s food to arrive or pulling out when you’re not wearing protection. If a few more people would ask “what happened?” (and maybe toss a little “aww” before it – “aww, what happened?”) there would be less violence.
Having a bad day is like the opposite of having HIV: everyone must know. We talk ears off about our bad days because it feels good to vent, to purge, regardless of whether or not people are listening (they’re not). So great are our egos and the need to tell people about our bad days that we sometimes hire a professional “what happened?/how are you?” asker. These people are called therapists and they make a killing off our misery. Never have nods and brow-furrows generated so much money. Eliminate bad days and therapists go the way of the stegosaurus.
Sometimes bad days are comprised of one ultra-shitty event:
“We’re going to Auschwitz.”
People want to know what happens on single-event bad days. Not because they care – although they may think they do – but because it gives them something to talk about, something to do other than Myspace surveys. Our days are populated with inane chatter and meaningless conversation. This gives people a podium, a chance to be heard. A chance to be profound. They get to be storytellers. They get to recount, gesticulate, embellish.
“Uh uh. It was six million.”
We are wielders of tragedies, and often bring up particularly horrible single-event bad days long after they’ve happened if we feel that people are neglecting us and forgetting how special we are.
“Matt just got a new job!”
“Cool. Hey, remember when my mom died?”
Single-event bad days lead to suicide. Multiple-event bad days lead to homicide. The national suicide rate is higher than the national homicide rate.
That doesn’t sound right. Fucking teenagers.